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Local Auto Dealer Says Car Sellers Will Survive

A local General Motors and Chrysler dealer says he and his fellow car sellers will persevere, even those who are losing their franchises with the automakers.

This week GM and Chrysler told hundreds of dealerships that they can no longer be official franchisees. Among the Chrysler dealerships on the list was Coyle Dodge in New Albany.

Chris Coyle is general manager of Coyle Dodge as well as Coyle Chevrolet. He says he hasn’t heard from GM about his franchise, but he says losing the relationship with automakers does not mean an end to the dealership.

“I’ve got faith in a lot of these guys out here that at the end of the day they’ll re-emerge,” he says. “They may not re-emerge with a franchise but there is an auto industry outside of Chrysler and General Motors.”

Coyle says the recession could mean a $20 million drop in sales across both dealerships this year.That’s led to decreased ad buying and sponsorship for things like Little League teams.

“Instead of spending $55 to $60 thousand, $70 thousand a month in advertising we may spend $35 to $40 and really realize and do a better job of figuring out what works,” he says.

Coyle Chrysler was among the 800 dealerships to lose its franchise with the automaker this week. General Motors will be ending its relationship with 11 hundred dealerships.

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Local News

Chrysler Shutdown List Includes KY, IN Franchises

From WFPL’s Kristin Espeland

Chrysler announced Thursday that it wants to close hundreds of U.S. dealerships as part of its bankruptcy plans.

The troubled automaker announced plans to close nearly 800 of its Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep dealerships across the country.

Close to 20 dealerships in Kentucky and Indiana could be affected, including several in the Louisville area.

But they may not go quietly.

The National Association of Auto Dealers is launching a public relations and Capitol Hill lobbying campaign to try to convince the Obama administration to intervene.

In a written statement, an association spokesperson said dealers understand the company is in financial trouble. But they believe they shouldn’t pay the price for it.

The spokesperson also says nearly 40,000 jobs nationwide could be in jeopardy because of the closings. The manufacturer filed for bankruptcy two weeks ago.

The Louisville-area dealerships being targeted include Neil Huffman Dodge,  Alex Montgomery in Mt. 
Washington,  Ray’s Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep in Brandenburg and Coyle Dodge in New Albany, Indiana.

A complete list of dealerships targeted for closing can be found here.